Tech Tip: Does your computer need more RAM?

In the tech tip from October 2014, Is It Time to Update Your Video Card?, we discussed updating your video card. Now let’s talk about how to know whether your DAT/EM workstation needs more RAM (Random Access Memory, or physical memory).

In your Windows Start search field, key in “System Information” or select the Summit > Help > About > System Info button. Look at the “Installed Physical Memory (RAM)” display.


DAT/EM’s current recommendation is 32 GB or more RAM. You can check DAT/EM’s recommendations any time on the DAT/EM Configurations Page.


DAT/EM Support is pretty sure little Oliver wanted more RAM sticks, not soup.

There are several reasons why DAT/EM workstations need adequate RAM:

  • To run programs like Summit, Landscape, and CAD/GIS at the same time.
  • To load large terrain files without crashing.
  • Computers that are low on RAM operate very slowly. All those unproductive seconds and minutes add up to financial losses that cost more than additional RAM.
  • People who wait for their computer a lot have higher blood pressure. (All right, we admit it, DAT/EM Support made up that statistic, but we think it’s true!)

A healthy diet, exercise, and enough RAM = good?

How do you purchase more RAM? Here are a few beginner’s hints:

  • RAM is not generic. You must order the right kind of RAM for your particular computer.


  • Check with your computer’s manufacturer for what kind of RAM the computer model needs.
  • Beware! There are plenty of internet services that may offer to help you, but some of these are a bad security risk! Please don’t allow any of these free services to scan your computer. Checking with the manufacturer is always the best method.

By Alissa Oder, Oliver’s value-added graphic by Jennifer Dowling